Philly teacher resigns after sexual misconduct allegation emerges from 20 years ago

WYNNEWOOD, Pa. - A Latin teacher at Friends’ Central in Philadelphia has resigned after school officials revealed an allegation of sexual misconduct that occurred 20 years ago has now come to light.

According to school officials, earlier this academic year, they received a report alleging sexual misconduct relating to events that reportedly occurred about 20 years ago.

The report stated that Prima Lingua and Latin teacher, Margaret Somerville, known to many as Margaret Roberts, had sexual contact with a minor while the individual was a student at Friends’ Central.

The school immediately placed Somerville on administrative leave up until she recently resigned. They also immediately reported the information to the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services ChildLine.


They say, following the ChildLine report, the school maintained regular contact with local law enforcement and cooperated fully in their process.

Once law enforcement permitted the school to conduct their own internal investigation, they retained an experienced independent investigator, Kristine Grady Derewicz of Littler Mendelson, P.C. whose investigations found the allegations about Somerville to be credible, the school says.

Based on the original report and Derewicz’ investigation, there is no indication that Somerville engaged in sexual misconduct with any other students during her tenure at the school.

The school released the following statement on the matter:

"The safety and wellbeing of Friends’ Central students is the first priority of our school. As soon as we received this report, we immediately notified the authorities and immediately placed the teacher on administrative leave. The actions of this teacher are serious, distressing and absolutely unacceptable. The professionalism of Friends’ Central teachers is at the core of our School’s great strength and is central to the success of our students and graduates."